Two classics of the American concerto repertoire are joined by a new piece (2001) by Oliver Lake, one of the founders of the World Saxophone Quartet in 1976. The World Saxophone Quartet has reached a level of popularity unprecedented by a free jazz ensemble. They have been in the vanguard of contemporary jazz for three decades. The members of the Quartet have developed highly individual careers as well.
In addition to being a very active composer and performer, Oliver Lake is a poet and a performing artist of poetry. As the title of his new piece suggests, it is dedicated to Rahsaan Roland Kirk and Stuff Smith, two Ohio natives who were leading figures of jazz in the twentieth century, though it is not in any way a pastiche of their work.
Robert Spring has been described as “one of this country’s most sensitive and talented clarinetists.” His recordings include Dragon’s Tongue, a CD of virtuoso music for clarinet and wind band, and Tarantelle, music that Jascha Heifetz recorded on violin, performed here on clarinet.
Canadian-born, New York-based pianist/composer D.D. Jackson’s last CD was awarded the prestigious Canadian Juno Award for Best Contemporary (Instrumental) Jazz Album. Jackson was also named the 2000 Jazz Report Composer of the Year, and the 2000 Downbeat Critics Poll #1 Talent Deserving Wider Recognition for Piano